woman readingSo you spent your life working hard in elementary school, maybe pushing through to university and thought, well once I land this job then I’ll be happy, or once I get married, then I’ll be happy, or once I get a divorce, then I’ll be happy. The reality is, the conditions for happiness are all right here, right now, but it’s not enough to say, “Just dip into the now and happiness will arise.”

There are too many conditioned forces at play from past experiences that compromise the ability for “the now” to be a source of happiness. But we can train our minds to relate to “the now” in a particular way and train our minds toward happiness.

The moment you step into the now and recognize that you have a choice in how you want to relate to your life, you have entered into a new state of clarity where opportunity, possibility and a greater sense of freedom open up. This is The Now Effect at play.

You have stepped aside from all the preconceptions and snap judgments that usually automatically influence your next move and reconnect with the intention to live as if it mattered.

The only time we have is now and so we choose to take each moment as an opportunity to train ourselves toward happiness and greater freedom. We can start to recognize the spaces of awareness that are all around us. It’s amazing how as we intentionally practice and repeat this these spaces begin to drop in on us like moments of grace throughout the day.  This is when it gets fun.

There begins to become a familiarity with the fact that we don’t have to believe everything we think and we’re not the movies in our minds. We have the power and choice to prime our minds for good, toward greater kindness, compassion and forgiveness, rewiring the bias our brain has toward automatically fixating on the negative. In the difficult moments we recognize the snap judgments that exacerbate the pain and see that we can choose a different and healthier response. Perhaps most importantly we experience the delusion of disconnection and a greater connection with ourselves and others. This is the basis for happiness.

As we begin training in the Now Effect, a deeper layer begins to emerge where these states of mind that we actively cultivate or that pop in on us spontaneously begin to become more pervasive traits of our personalities.

If you’ve been a regular reader of my blogs, you know that groundbreaking science is pointing us to the fact that we have the ability to use our intentional attention to change the architecture of our brains in very adaptive ways. That may be the neuroscience behind this deeper, more pervasive layer of the Now Effect.

The Now Effect: How this Moment Can Change the Rest of Your Life with embedded videos for practice is available for pre-order now. May this be a time to understand that there is no better time than now to get started with priming your mind to what really matters.

Enjoy!

As always, please share your thoughts, stories and questions below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.

Woman reading photo available from Shutterstock.

 


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    Last reviewed: 21 Dec 2011

APA Reference
Goldstein, E. (2011). You Can Train Your Mind to Be Happy. Psych Central. Retrieved on July 23, 2014, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/mindfulness/2011/12/you-can-train-your-mind-to-be-happy/

 

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